Tamiya M4 Sherman Build Report 3: Weathering, Part I

In the last build report, the Sherman got its paint and markings. Now, it’s time for the good stuff – weathering!

My past experience with weathering tanks is minimal. I probably built ten or so armor kits growing up, but I don’t really remember weathering them. If I did it was the simplest of drybrushing. Honestly the most intensive armor weathering I’ve done to date is letting my old Tamiya Panzer IV gather dust for 17 years…

I’m aiming to change that with this Sherman, so, using an article out of a 2010 Fine Scale Modeler as a guide, I’m going to be weathering this one pretty heavily, using a whole slew of techniques I’ve never tried before. Since there’s going to be so much going on, I’ve decided to break the weathering into two posts. This first post will focus on the upper hull and turret, while the second will be more about the lower hull, suspension and tracks.

Let’s get to it.


Apparently the first step to weathering an armor build is drybrushing.The FSM article recommends a German gray/tan color called dunkelgrau, so I picked up a bottle of Model Master enamel and went to work, drybrushing the tank and tracks.

I have to admit, I was pretty pleased how well this came out.

Filter Wash

After the drybrushing er, dried, I moved on to the filter wash. For this I opted to use the same Winton & Newton raw umber artist oil that I used to filter the P-47, albeit with a heavier ratio of paint. This was then brushed over the tank with a wide brush. The idea here was to subtly modulate the finish and add some overall depth.


After the filter wash, it was time to add streaks. I did these using Winton & Newton raw umber, transparent white, payne’s gray, and some form of black. The oils were applied in small dots using an airbrush needle, then brushed over with a wide brush moist with thinner. After this, they were “raked” with an Aqualon Wisp brush to create the streaking effect.

That just about does it for the first stage of the weathering. Check back for part two and final assembly!


5 Comments Add yours

  1. Hanan says:

    Hi, I hope you are still checking this.

    Anyways, I couple of questions.

    A) for the dry brushing, did you have to add thinner first to the enamel you used?

    B) I am having a hard time picturing using the Winton & Newton raw umber artist oil. Wouldn’t this just glob all over the tank? Do you have to add thinner?

    1. Doogs says:

      Yep, still checking!

      To answer:

      A) no thinning with the enamel!

      B) HEAVY thinning with the artist oil. You want it almost transparent.

  2. Hanan says:

    Thanks. I am off to try those two.

    “Ill Be Back”

  3. Hanan says:

    Oh, another question. Is there any particular brush to use for dry brushing? When I go to the hobby store, I see acrylic, oil, brushes and everything in between.

  4. Lightship says:

    Thanks for this article, I plan on using some of these techniques on a 1/16 wood Sherman I built, like a kit fromm WWII.

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